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It takes more than martial-arts training and a cool cape to protect Gotham City. Over the years, Batman has relied on an evolving series of vehicles to help bring down his most infamous enemies.
The Batmobile has changed a lot since the 1941 original. It now has a more imposing, military-influenced design, as seen in „The Dark Knight“ trilogy and the upcoming „Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.“
Read on to see how the Batmobile has kept pace with Bruce Wayne’s quest to keep Gotham safe:
The first car to be referred to as a „Batmobile“ appeared in Detective Comics No. 48 in 1941. It was far more subtle than any of its successors. The car, which appears to be inspired by the Cord Roadster, had a small gold bat on the hood.
The first drivable Batmobile came from Adam West’s 1966 live-action „Batman“ adaptation. Based on the Lincoln Futura, legendary designer George Barris dreamed up the car in 15 days.
Rather than the red and black of previous iterations, the Batmobile from the 1970s „Super Friends“ series was blue and black, with yellow details to highlight the more prominent bat insignia.
Frank Miller’s „The Dark Knight Returns“ (1986) is an important evolution. The Batmobile was overhauled to appear as a redesigned tank. Prioritizing weapons and defense was important to the much more stark version of Gotham in the comic series.
Tim Burton’s live-action adaptation of the Batmobile from 1989 is very cool. It’s sleek and imposing, and the jet-black exterior and polished finish really give off a sense of wealth, tying together Bruce Wayne and the Batman persona.
The 1992 debut of „Batman: The Animated Series“ began a new era. It featured the voice of Kevin Conroy as Batman and debuted the updated sleek Batmobile design seen in the later „Justice League“ spin-off.
The Batmobile in „Batman Forever“ (1995) is one of its flashiest appearances, with an almost rib-cage-like design. Its shape is also vaguely reminiscent of the 1989 version.
„Batman & Robin“ (1997) was panned by critics, but its Batmobile isn’t the worst ever. It has a similar shape to previous live-action Batmobiles, but is black instead of the eerie blue glow of the 1995 design.
The live-action „Dark Knight“ trilogy from director Christopher Nolan introduced the Tumbler, an all-terrain, military-inspired version of the Batmobile. It could also be seen as a realization of the Batmobile in Miller’s „The Dark Knight Returns.“
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In a first for the popular „Arkham“ video-game series, players take control of the Batmobile in the quest against Scarecrow’s fear toxin. Heavily inspired by Nolan’s Batmobile, the game also featured un-lockable „skins,“ which changed the vehicle’s appearance to match other famous Batmobile iterations.
Finally, the upcoming „Batman v Superman“ will usher in a new era for the Dark Knight. Ben Affleck will take on the role, and we’ve already gotten a close look at the new Batmobile, which weighs over 7,000 pounds and, in the film, can drive up to 205 mph.
In real life, the car can reach a speed of 90 mph.
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